Formula 1 Livefeed

Bahrain Grand Prix practice as it happened

The 2022 Formula 1 season officially gets underway with Friday practice for the Bahrain Grand Prix.

By: Jake Boxall-Legge, Megan White, Haydn Cobb, James Newbold


  • Verstappen fastest in F1 Bahrain GP FP2 session from Leclerc
  • Sainz underlines Ferrari's improvement in third, with Russell the leading Mercedes in fourth; Hamilton only ninth, complaining of brake problems
  • Stand-in driver Hulkenberg just a tenth off Aston team-mate Stroll on his return subbing for a COVID-stricken Vettel
  • Tsunoda contact with Stroll at Turn 8 hairpin is noted by stewards; the Japanese under investigation for baulking Leclerc earlier at the same corner
  • Gasly tops the times in slower FP1 session from Leclerc and Ferrari team-mate Sainz
  1. Verstappen, Red Bull - 1m31.936s
  2. Leclerc, Ferrari - 1m32.023s
  3. Sainz, Ferrari - 1m32.250s
  4. Russell, Mercedes - 1m32.529s
  5. Alonso, Alpine - 1m32.877s
  6. Bottas, Alfa Romeo - 1m32.951s
  7. Perez, Red Bull - 1m32.958s
  8. Schumacher, Haas - 1m33.085s
  9. Hamilton, Mercedes - 1m33.144s
  10. Magnussen, Haas - 1m33.183s
Status: Stopped
Right, that'll just about do for our live text coverage on Friday's track action at the Bahrain GP. Be sure to check back in tomorrow ahead of final practice which starts at 12pm GMT (3pm local time). Until then, have a lovely evening, go well!
In non-FP2 news, Hamilton and FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem held a meeting yesterday to discuss diversity and inclusion in motorsport. The topic of Hamilton's absence from last year's FIA prize giving gala also came up.

Here's the full round-up on FP2, as Verstappen goes quickest from Leclerc and Sainz:

Tsunoda has another close moment at Turn 8, this time with Stroll, as it looks like the AlphaTauri driver clipped his front wing against the right-rear tyre of the Aston Martin. That incident has also been noted by race control.
Time for some practice starts on the grid, which is always fun. It is also worth noting that five of the top 10 in FP2 are Ferrari-powered cars. Still early days, but Ferrari did say it had found some major performance gains.
That FP2 session has flown by and the chequered flag is out. Verstappen ends the session on top by 0.087s from Leclerc.
The FIA stewards will investigate that Leclerc vs Tsunoda incident.
A Turn 8 incident between Leclerc and Tsunoda has been noted by race control. Replays show Leclerc charging up to the rear of Tsunoda who doesn't get out of the way at the corner apex. Leclerc raises a hand in frustration.
Maybe McLaren can use new sponsor Google to find a fix for Ricciardo's car trouble. It is what I do with 99% of my problems and it usually works out.
A mix of used softs and mediums on show which are likely to be the favoured race tyres come Sunday. But not for Ricciardo, who is out of his McLaren in the garage.
Race runs o'clock with 15 minutes to go in FP2.
Sainz has slotted himself into third place with a 1m32.520s using the softs to put Ferrari 2nd and 3rd on the times - just as they were at the end of FP1.
Here's the latest from Alpine after Esteban Ocon's dramatic break in its sidepod in first practice:
Time for a lull in the track action after that mini-qualifying simulation. Worth noting both Haas cars are in the top 10, there's still a long way to go but that'll be encouraging for the team that's really been through it in recent weeks.
Leclerc's second go on the soft tyres puts him 0.087s off Verstappen's leading lap time. Very tight.
"Some sort of problem with the front brakes, man. Right front pulling," Hamilton says over his team radio. That won't help his progress.
Russell vaults up to third place with a 1m32.529s but is almost six tenths of a second off Verstappen. Hamilton is further down the order in ninth place.
Verstappen goes quickest with a 1m31.936s on the soft tyres. Now that's a quick lap, 0.327s faster than Leclerc's earlier top time, in fact.
Hamilton, who locked up at Turn 1, is only 16th fastest for Mercedes on the soft tyres and the car looks like it is really being dogged by porpoising. If that's even a thing.
Leclerc produces the new FP2 marker with a 1m32.263s in his Ferrari. That's 0.614s quicker than Alonso.
Alonso makes his claim for top spot with a 1m32.877s - beating both Ferraris in the process. Interesting.
Magnussen goes second quickest with a 1m33.183s - just 0.062s off the top.
Lots of drivers switching to the soft tyres so some more quicker lap times coming in. Standby.
Nico Hulkenback continues to make a solid start to his stand-in showing for COVID-hit Vettel, as the German driver puts in a 1m34.061s on the soft tyres to go fifth.
Bottas has shaken off his FP1 engine woes as he moves up to fourth place for Alfa Romeo with a 1m33.970s on the mediums.
Either my eyesight is going or the two Alpines are a different shade of pink in these pictures: 
14-and-a-bit minutes into FP2 and Perez is the 20th and last driver to head out on the track. Red Bull won't be too worried about the delay given the three days of running it enjoyed in Bahrain in last week's test.
Verstappen slots into second place with his opening effort, a 1m33.621s on the mediums, to go half a second behind timesheet topper Leclerc.
"It's still bouncing a lot," Hamilton says on Mercedes team radio. It is clear to see which teams have fixed the porpoising problem and which hasn't.

"We are at the limit of bouncing I can feel in the straight," Ocon reports over Alpine team radio. Bouncing, otherwise known as porpoising in the new F1 lexicon.

Hamilton disrupts the formation at the top by slotting into fourth place with a 1m34.379s on the mediums. Elsewhere, Verstappen nips out on to the track for the first time in FP2.

It is a two-by-two at the top of the times, with Ferrari's 1-2 followed by an Alpine 3-4. Alonso edges team-mate Ocon by a couple of tenths on the outright lap times.

Hamilton is out on track now, but still no sign of either Red Bull.

Not for long though, as Sainz's Ferrari team-mate Leclerc betters that with a 1m33.121s.

Sainz provides the early leading lap time with a 1m33.837s for Ferrari.
Everyone on track is on the medium tyres apart from the McLaren pair who are both on the hards.

Anyway, here we go with 15 F1 drivers taking to the track immediately led by 'return of the Mag'-nussen.

Both Hamilton and Verstappen are poised and ready for FP2 but both their F1 cars aren't. Both cars are up on the jacks with mechanics hard at work in the Mercedes and Red Bull garages.